MA Conflict Analysis and Management Theses

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    The impact of life experiences on the expression of compassionate action in volunteers
    (2023-07-12) Huska, Stephanie; Brown, Carol
    This exploratory qualitative study considers the connection between life experience and compassion by conducting two virtual circle processes with volunteers located in Williams Lake, British Columbia. A network selection strategy was used to gather 10 participants, resulting in two circles with five volunteers each. The two virtual circle processes were recorded, then the dialogue was transcribed and analyzed for themes by means of narrative analysis. The definition of compassion used for this study is the ability to understand another’s suffering and the desire to relieve them of their suffering. The research conducted for this paper uses volunteers as participants to understand compassion in practical applications. Six themes were developed from the data and are as follows; connection, it feels good, volunteering modeled, religious anchor, common humanity and recognition of economic inequality. The six themes fit into three compassion cultivation domains, which I named self, soul and external.
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    What do I do now? Church leader decision-making in response to complaints about one of their team member’s emotionally harmful behaviours
    (2023-01-12) Enns, Jodi Leanne; Jull, Marnie
    This phenomenological study explores the obstacles, motivations, supports and gaps church leaders identify as they make decisions when a complaint of emotional harm is submitted against another individual whom the leader oversees. Complaints are made against behaviours that are often nuanced and, to name a few, can include patterns of sarcasm, shaming, overly controlling behaviour, coercion, angry outbursts, or passive aggressive tendencies. A leader responding to a reported complaint encounters obstacles, motivations, supports and gaps in decision-making. Exploring case studies of church leaders, this research utilizes the Insight approach as a framework that attends to the interiority of individual decision-making within complex social contexts. Understanding how leaders make decisions in the face of a complaint of emotional harm can better equip future leaders who are required to respond to similar complaints.
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    Hierarchical leadership, ableism and avoidance : coach and administrator conflict in the Canadian para sport system
    (2022-09-15) Heron , Samantha Aliya; Walinga, Jennifer
    The para sport system across Canada is relatively new in relation to the Canadian sport system that serves able bodied participants. Given the relative newness of the system, combined with the inherent ableism and lack of understanding that accompanies disability, all stakeholders, but particularly the athletes, coaches and administrators within the para system, experience substantive and affective conflict that impacts positive progress in the development of the para sport system. This study, using Dugan’s (1996) Nested Theory of Conflict to understand the layers of conflict within the system, and work of Fletcher (2004), Bilal et al. (2019), and Brown (2014) to understand the differences between feminine, post heroic, shared leadership, and masculine, heroic leadership structures, examines the conflict experienced by coaches and administrators in the para sport system Through participatory action research, coaches and administrators in the Canadian sport system participated in semi structured interviews and a focus group to explore both the conflict they experienced and their ability to respond to it. Ultimately, the study identifies a lack of psychological safety caused by the power dynamics that exist within hierarchical leadership structures as the main contributors to a state of threat and fear for coaches and administrators. Perceived threat and fear, combined with a conflict skillset that is largely centered on avoidance, leaves coaches and administrators with low capacity to advocate for positive adjustments to the para sport system. Future recommendations are to explore the opportunities that exists in shared leadership structures, as well as educational opportunities to impact the conflict skillset of coaches and administrators across the sport system. An outcome of this project was to create understanding of effective conflict competencies needed by coaches and sport administrators as they navigate the sport system. This research combined with future research contributes to refinements of the Canadian sport development system
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    Urban Indigenous Two-Spirit womxn’s experiences with ceremony : a journey of witnessing, reflection, and convergence through story
    (2022-01-12) Horsefall, Barbra Germaine; Leason, Jennifer
    The imposition of Western patriarchal norms on Indigenous peoples has created strict notions of gender binaries that categorize individuals as either male or female. This imposed binary has impacted how Indigenous womxn and gender fluid people are treated within communities and ceremonies. Indigenous ceremonial protocols have been reshaped by Christian and colonial influences that have impacted traditional roles of womxn and Two-Spirits. Through an Otipemisiwak Two-Spirit, tribal epistemology, and an intersectional feminist framework (IFF) (Morris & Bunjun, 2007), this research uses an Indigenous relational methodology (Kovach 2010; Wilson, S., 2008) of oral (digital) storytelling to explore the experiences of three Two-Spirit womxn with gender protocols in Indigenous ceremonies. Findings demonstrate the complexities of multiple gendered oppressions and “otherness” of Two-Spirit womxn and how imposed norms and roles have created negative experiences, displacement, confusion, rejection, and contribute to ceremonial avoidance or an inability to heal while participating. This research contributes to the growing grassroots movements to create more inclusive, safe, ethical, and open spaces for Two-Spirit people.
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    Conflict in sport : a case of competitive ice hockey and constructive conflict
    (2021-03-25) Van Muyen, Steven
    The purpose of this study was to better understand the experience of conflict management among a male university ice hockey team and how constructive conflict processes may foster an athlete’s perceived performance, personal growth, and leadership development. The research question asked, “what constructive conflict processes foster leadership development, personal growth, and performance among a competitive male university ice hockey team?” Semi-structured interviews were conducted with seven participants from a single Canadian male university hockey team. Qualitative thematic analysis revealed that open, honest, and shared communication as a constructive conflict process fostered the perceived performance, personal growth, and leadership development of the team. Specifically, performance was perceived as benefiting from an increase in team connections and confidence, athletes experienced personal growth by gaining the ability to be deliberate in conflict with increased selflessness, and members of the team learned how to lead by example during conflict.